Explainer: Energy regulation in Australia
Whether or not you like to keep up with international news, it would have been hard to miss what went down in Texas last week. But just in case you haven’t, the US state was randomly hit with a massive cold snap, now recognised as ‘the big freeze’. As a result, power plants were frozen, cutting off electricity supply to many households. Texas has a highly deregulated energy market, where customers choose their electricity provider between a set of scores. And many of these retailers charge electricity at wholesale prices that fluctuate in sync with demand. So, once the ‘big freeze hit’, households who had access to electricity found themselves with energy bills that were hitting $US1,000 a day ($1,289 AUD).How did this happen you may be asking? Well, many experts are arguing poor preparation and planning on behalf of the retailers. While Australia doesn’t get snow storms, you might be wondering what energy regulation looks like in your state and whether something like the Texas big freeze could occur down under. So without further ado, check out our guide to understanding energy regulation.